What Is Brief Action Planning?

Connie Davis, RN, MN, ARNP; Co-Director of the Centre for Collaboration, Motivation, and Innovation

Have trouble viewing this video? Read the transcript.

Learning Objectives: At the end of this activity, you will be able to:
  • Explain
    brief action planning.
  • Discuss the evidence that supports brief action planning.

Description: Whether you’re a patient or provider, you probably know that behavior change is hard.

But with chronic diseases on the rise, many providers know that medical treatment alone isn’t enough to improve health outcomes. Lifestyles have to change, too.

In this video, Connie Davis, RN, MN, ARNP; Co-Director at the Centre for Collaboration, Motivation, and Innovation​, explains a technique called brief action planning, which helps providers improve people’s likelihood of making a change in their lives.

Discussion Questions:

  1. Why do you think it’s important to ask patients for permission to talk about their health goals?
  2. In what types of situations do you think patients could benefit from a brief action plan with their provider?
  3. Think about a time when you were able to make a change for your health. What helped you do it? Did any of the components of brief action planning play a part?
  4. Ask someone in your group to describe Plan, Do, Study, Act cycles. (Or, review QI 102: The Model for Improvement: Your Engine for Change.) What similarities do you notice between brief action planning and PDSA cycles?
  5. Imagine you’re seeing a patient with whom you made a brief action plan during your last visit, and the patient wasn’t able to follow through. What would your next step be?
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